Capital campaign kickoff planned for North Suffolk YMCA

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 10, 2004

The groundbreaking and capital campaign kickoff for Suffolk’s second YMCA facility will be held later this month.

Hopes are to raise $2.2 million in the campaign to fund the anticipated $5.8 million, 32,000 square foot facility that will be located on 13 acres off Shoulders Hill Road near the intersection with Bridge Road, according to facility executive director Keaton Finch.

Finch and district YMCA official Ed Lee, former executive director of the Godwin Boulevard Y, presented a program on the new facility at Thursday’s meeting of the Suffolk Rotary Club.

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In addition to child care facilities, indoor and outdoor pools and a workout room, Keaton said plans call for the new facility to include such amenities as a yoga and Pilates room and a teen room that will include pool tables, a climbing wall and &uot;serve as a place for them to go and hangout after their work out.&uot;

Lee discussed the history of the Y in Suffolk. He was the first director of the Godwin Boulevard Y, which opened in 1990 with a budget of $300,000 and 600 membership units and has grown today to a $2.7 million budget and more than 3,000 membership units.

In addition, the facility now serves 188 children in its after school program; 250 in its soccer program and 300 in basketball. He noted that 60 percent of the membership receives some type of financial assistance with their membership dues and that the total subsidy is $205,000.

He also credited the Suffolk volunteers with helping to make the Y in Suffolk what it is today. He particularly noted Rotary Chairman John Harrell who served on the board, as well as other Rotarians who played central rolls in getting the facility off the ground.

&uot;The beauty of the YMCA is that it’s a community organization that’s open to everybody in the community,&uot; Lee said.

Keaton, a Windsor native, has worked for several years as executive director of a Y in the Greenbrier area of Chesapeake.

The Y will partner with Bon Secours Medical Center on the north Suffolk project. Keaton noted that Bon Secours has a big presence in the Harbour View

area and wants to extend its reach into north Suffolk. Plans call for Bon Secour to operate a 3,500 square foot women’s health and diagnostic center with the north Suffolk Y that will have a separate entrance.

The ceremony has been set for Sept. 29.